Grismore / Scea Group: Well Behaved Fish (2006)

By Published: | 3,894 views
How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Grismore / Scea Group: Well Behaved Fish
Well Behaved Fish opens with Ornette Coleman's "Dancing in Your Head," an upbeat, obstreporous, hard-driving electro-orchestral performance, and a fitting introduction to a plugged-in set of sounds reminscent of some of Miles Davis' mid to late-'70s work. But the Grismore/Scea Group, co-led by guitarist Steve Grismore and multi-reedist Paul Scea, gives the sound more focus and structure than Davis' defiantly amorphous approach.

Like Miles' much maligned On the Corner (Columbia, '72), a set that seems to be getting a critical upgrade of late, the individual instruments on Well Behaved Fish are at times difficult to identify. Wind controller, guitar synth, and amped-up saxophones mingle together, though Scea's flute drifts distinctly at times, wailing into the electro-smear on "Spinach Dip."

"Baghdad" reins in the pace, with floating Middle East string instrument sounds and percussion behind Brent Sandy's tart trumpet. "Crush" showcases a beefy trio rhythm—Grismore's intensely blurry guitar lines, Anthony Cox's beefy, seismic bass, and Marc Gratama's heavy rock-like drum work. The closer, "Good God," sounds funkily mainstream, with Grismore wah-wahing behind Scea's searing hot tenor sax solo.

Both leaders teach, Grismore at Augustana College and the University of Iowa, Scea at West Virginia University—two geographical locales that are a long way from the modern jazz meccas. With Well Behaved Fish they prove that the "location, location, location" mantra does't hold a lot of water in terms of making modern and intriguing first-rate jazz sounds.

Track Listing: Dancing in Your Head; Cletus N' Gugu; Bagdad; Spinach Dip; Crush; Introductions; I'm Being Held Hostage to Your Failure; Well Behaved Fish; Pigs at the Trough; Benevolent Psychopathology.

Personnel: Steve Grismore: guitar, guitar synthesizer; Paul Scea: saxes, flute, wind controller; Brent Sandy: trumpet; Anthony Cox: bass; Marc Gratama: drums, synth drums.

Style: Modern Jazz


comments powered by Disqus
Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW

Enter it twice.
To the weekly jazz events calendar

Enter the numbers in the graphic
Enter the code in this picture

Log in

One moment, you will be redirected shortly.

or search site with Google